The new Drive By Truckers’ album was released on March 16th and I was pretty excited about this one. It’s a full-blown PRODUCTION kind of album. How big is Big To-Do? Well, that depends on whether you bought the vinyl or the CD, see? (“Girls Who Smoke” was only released on the vinyl.) Wait, what? Why?
I’m a big Drive By Truckers fanatic and I can never wait for the next show or the next album. A live Trucker show is like a shot in the arm, and not in that bad way . . . The new CD is like reading a good book. Lots of story-songs on this one. Patterson tells smutty tales of some bad-ass characters and Cooley sings about hookers and being jobless. You know, everyday life stuff.
Townes Van Zandt reportedly said he didn’t like circus songs much, and I tend to agree with him. So, “The Flying Wallendas” will never be one of my favorites, but, that said . . this is not an album with a theme like that. Variety is the spice here. Finally, I have a studio cut of “After the Scene Dies.” Strike the set and cue the wrap party! I love this song.
Mad love to Shonna Tucker! She has really proven herself as a singer and songwriter on this one. I can see the day when Truckers’ shows will feature a lot of Shonna. (I’m still waiting to hear Purgatory Line live, but that’s a whole ‘nother album.) Hearing “You Got Another” was a beautiful thing. I like “I Told You So” even more. It’s a rocking, dancing number. This is unusual and catchy. Good goin’, woman!
Patterson Hood has been following the news and waxing prolific again, but you will never hear me complain about that. If you buy one song from this release, it’ll be “The Wig He Made Her Wear”, I’ll bet. It’s a fascinating story and you just can’t quite look away. “He made her do things that made her feel so ashamed.” So, she shot him.
I think my favorite Cooley cut on this one is “Get Downtown.” Put your face in somebody’s that ain’t mine. That’s just so Cooley!
Check it out. This ain’t no band full of slackers, here. They keep me entertained year after year after year after year.